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Sunday, August 24, 2014

Comics Squad Recess! Edited by the creators of BABYMOUSE and LUNCH LADY. Random House, 2014. $8.99 ages 7 and up

"I developed super-awesome ninja skills! I've become a super-awesome ninja! I'm finally ready to join the SUPER-SECRET NINJA CLUB!

What are you talking about?

You know, your Super-Secret Ninja Club!"

This is a book for comic lovers, as you can so easily see! There are familiar faces here for those kids who love Babymouse and Lunch Lady. It is a very funny collection of eight stories from familiar (and perhaps not so familiar) authors and is sure to become a hands-down favorite for all.

The stories are related to school, and to recess. They will entice with the many different ways that these writers interpret recess happenings. Characters include a nerdy boy longing to be a ninja, who learns the eighteen disciplines only to find out that the club he wants to belong to has been disbanded. What can he do? There is an invitation to mash-up some of your favorite cartoon characters into a brand new being. When Lunch Lady leaves Betty in charge of Pizza Day, she must turn to the Pizzatron 2000 for help and then deal with the fallout created by letting a pizza monster loose. Not only that, a game of freeze tag introduces Jimmy Sprinkles and the Mean Green Gang. I won't go on, but you get the picture.

Readers will be snorting at the antics of these cartoon crazies. They are sure to recognize the distinctive styles of some of their favorite authors. They will be introduced to new characters as well. Every entry employs the recess theme in raucous, lively tales that are sure to have kids sharing them with each other, alone...and again and again and again!

I love Dan Santat's story about an assigned 300 word paper on The Giving Tree that is part embarrassment, part romance and a lesson in honesty. You will also want to meet Boring Becca, the fifth grade rainy day monitor called in when rain cancels a planned kickball tournament. She's got the goods!

I think you should buy more than one copy!

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